“I spy” with my little eye…

Well, I think I have just about won the award for most sporadic blogger!  Anyhoo, here’s one of the little projects I have been up to:  The “I spy” bag.  These take no time at all to whip up, and are an easy project for a beginning sewer.  They are handy for keeping kiddos busy during car trips, in waiting rooms, or quiet during nap time, when a nap is clearly wishful thinking.  I have been gifting them for birthday parties as well.


How to make an “I spy” bag:

1.  Cut out three squares of fabric (approx. 6″ to 8″).

2.  Take two of the squares and place right sides together.

3.  Trace a circle or other shape for the viewing “window.”

4.  Sew around the traced shape and cut it out, not too close to your stitching.

5.  Pull one side through the hole you have made and smooth out your square flat.

6.  Cut some clear plastic for the window, a bit larger than the hole you’ve made.  I just cut up the thick plastic bags that bedding sheets or comforters come in.

7.  Pin the plastic to the wrong side, and sew in place around the window.  I sewed two seams, just to be safe.

8.  Pin this piece right sides together with your third and final square.  Sew a seam around the edges,  leaving a few inches of space to turn right sides out.

9.  Fill your bag with clear beads- sold in craft and dollar stores as “polyfil” or “vase filler.”  Fill about 2/3 to the top.

10.  Add about a dozen little treasures, as below.


11.  Sew the bag opening shut.  Then sew an additional seam around the bag edges to make sure it’s extra secure.

12.  If you like, you can take a photo of the items inside, laminate it, and attach to the bag with a loop and a ring, so your little one knows what to search for.

Bonus tip- vary the size of the “window” depending on the age of the child.  Smaller = more difficult.  Also, more filling = more difficult.  As with any toy with small parts, please supervise young children.



Toddler Nap Mat

napIf my recent posts about shopping and exercise have left you wondering, “What happened to the crafting and sewing?!” look no further. I’m still at it;) Last night, I finally finished a travel nap mat for my daughter. I started it months ago, first aiming to complete it in time for Christmas, then later for her birthday. It wasn’t that it was a difficult or overly time-consuming project, but simply that I lost interest and/or got distracted by other projects when I was about 3/4 finished.

The nap mat features an attached blanket and built in pillow, so you don’t have to worry about losing them. The mat rolls and buttons up for easy travel, and has a strap to carry it on your shoulder. Surprise surprise, I chose a purple unicorn fabric;) The body of the mat has a piece of 1″ foam inserted inside, and the pillow is made nice and “poufy” with polyfil stuffing.

When I completed the project, Kay was already asleep for the night. Fortuitously, she woke a short time later and was calling for me. It was like she knew I had made something for her, and she wanted to see it right away! She loved it so much that she went to sleep in her new nap mat on her bedroom floor:)




If you would like to try this project for yourself, you can find the tutorial I used here:

Happy napping everyone!

LOVE this bag!

Fellow sewing friends, you simply must make this bag! Non-sewing friends, you simply must have someone make it for you! The Letty bag is a pattern created by Robin Gallagher of “Robin’s Quilts etc.” It is fairly large and uber-versatile- think diaper bag, work or gym bag, or just a larger size purse for those who like to carry around everything but the kitchen sink;)

The bag features six medium-sized interior pockets plus a smaller cell phone pocket. On the outside are two large (back and front) pockets accented by butttons. The grommet styling allows you to carry the purse with two straps on your shoulder, or pull into one longer strap to carry as a crossbody bag when you need both hands free. Genius! Gets both my mommy and working woman seal of approval. I love how variations in fabric can totally change the style and “feel” of the bag.

I consider my self to be a beginner-intermediate sewer and it takes me about four or five hours to complete this bag. My super-advanced sewing friend can whip one up in about two hours. Check out the Letty bags I have made so far:

Letty bag- books

Letty bag- Kim

Letty bag- pink


Interior view:

Letty bag interior view